427 pages, Col illus
Biological Diversity takes a fresh, innovative approach to the teaching of biodiversity. Rather than detailing and cataloguing the major taxa and their evolutionary relationships, the authors have selected 18 groups of organisms and used these as a framework in which to discuss the species and their interactions with man and each other. There is a strong narrative theme throughout - the exploited and the exploiters - and, in many cases, there is emphasis on the historical context. A wide range of organisms are covered, from the unicellular to birds and mammals and with an equal consideration of plants and animals. Species have been chosen for their ability to best illustrate particular biological principles, and for their strong interaction with other species.
After an introduction the book is divided into two parts: 'Exploited' and 'Exploiters'. Each of the chapters, although linked to each other, forms a stand-alone essay. They are scientifically rigorous, up-to-date and do not shy away from addressing some controversial issues. Chapters have' text boxes' highlighting important issues and concepts, lists of further reading and references. In addition to tables and figures the book has a selection of original illustrations drawn by leading artist Steven Appleby. This fresh approach will appeal to all those interested in the biological sciences, and aims to be accessible to people with a diversity of backgrounds. It will prove particularly useful to biology students, enabling them to get to grips with important biological principles and concepts that underpin the diversity of life, and the interrelationship of humans with other groups of organisms.
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